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Keep Kids Safe Online

Monday, January 9th, 2006 by | Filed Under: Using The Internet
 
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Are you worried about what your children or grandchildren will encounter while surfing the web? Letting a kid run loose with a web browser is like letting them walk alone through a bad neighborhood at night. There’s just a lot that can go wrong.

Well, if you let them surf with Internet Explorer, you can take control! Here’s how:

1. Open Internet Explorer, hit the Tools menu, Internet Options.

2. Click the Content tab. You’ll see a “Content Advisor” area. Click the Enable button.

3. You’ll get a tabbed screen chock full of exciting security options. The first tab is “Ratings” and it’s the first step in the process. It will filter out sites that have an “RASC” rating that doesn’t match your preferences, but it will also filter out any site that simply has no rating at all.

For example, Disney.com works great, but NickJr.com (great spot for pre-schoolers) won’t come up. Maybe Blue’s Clues could do an episode where they find out how to get RASC approval…

4. The next tab is called “Approved Sites” and it’s the solution for letting your kids get to sites that do not have an RASC rating yet. You can set this up in one of two ways.

The first, and most difficult method is to manually type in sites you think are OK. Just type in the address of the site in the “Allow this Web site” box and click the “Always” button.

The easy way:

Once Content Advisor is set up with a password (next step), you will get a prompt for that password every time you land on a site without a rating. This screen will give you the option to always allow the site – a much faster way to go.

5. OK, here’s the last critical step – setting up a password. Click the General Tab and you’ll see the password setup under the “Supervisor Password” area. Click the button and set it up :-)

That’s it, your Content Advisor is now set up and ready to filter. Keep in mind that this is not foolproof, but it’s a lot better than letting your kids traipse all over the internet unsupervised.

Also, if the kids aren’t going to be using the computer, you can easily disable it. Just head back to the content tab and click the “Disable” button in the “Content Advisor” area. That way, you’re not getting prompted on every unrated page you visit.

~ Steve

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